New to go, Help understanding ranking, time rules, etc

Hi, this may be a redundant questions, but I’m brand new to GO, and already hooked. Played probably 10 games and just won my first! But, instead of actually winning, my opponent just stopped playing and let the game time out. What I don’t understand is why they did this? and… why, after the first timer went out there was another that said 30(5), and then 30 second timers started. Please feel free to point me in the right direction if there’s a thread for this?

Also, can anyone explain how to create games that aren’t friendlies? I’m trying to get my rank dialed in (which probably means losing a few more games, but that’s ok) but it seems only games I join affect my rank, not one’s I create.

Thanks in advance.


Maybe they had connection issues, maybe they are trying to artificially lower their rank, could be a variety of reasons. But just leaving the game instead of resigning or playing on is against the rules.

If you create a custom game, this needs to be ticked, or else it won’t affect your rank. Probably best just to use the Automatch finder though.


I don’t see that game in your game-history, but anyway:

Byo-Yomi at Sensei's Library


Friendly games are an automated name given by the system which you can change in the setting for each game. It has no consequence on the rating, it’s just a name. What matters is ranked or not ranked.
You may find more information on time settings, rules etc… in the documentation.


I never use automatch, but from what I saw in the Western Server Challenge thread, automatch is slower for finding games than just making an open challenge. I always play by making an open challenge, and it never takes long to get accepted

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This is true. Very true. More true than it should be. I guess OGS did everything correctly when it removed the “quick” from the feature name.

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I’d assume it heavily depends on your level and board size. I only use automatch (ever since I joined as a beginner) and never had trouble.


OK, that helps, thanks a lot!

Good point - I used to have all sizes turned on and it was fine. Now I only have 9x9 due to time constraints, and Automatch feels a lot more “sparse”

Conversely, I believe Automatch works much better on 9x9 than 19x19 if you’re TPK.

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What is your level and mode of play?

I started by playing 9x9 as a beginner, and switched to 19x19 around 12k (up to 6k at the moment), but I don’t play much anymore.

I think at least 95% of my games are automatch.

Do you play Blitz or normal? I played 13x13-normal for a while after I got into Go because it was easy to learn and a game didn’t take too long. For this setting the AF kind of worked even though I still oftentimes had long queueing times.
Then I started getting into 19x19 more and more because of the strategical depth but I just do not have the time to play 40 minute games. So I started playing 19x19 Blitz and I really have a hard time finding matches on OGS.

I mostly play on Fox these days but I hope OGS can get better in the future.

Normal. I would imagine that any deviation from the standard settings (such as blitz) makes automatch less adequate.

Blitz is a standard setting though. Takes me about 10s to find a game on Fox.

EDIT: For scientific purposes I tested this today at 20:40 UTC which should be a good time for EU/US Go players. Checked how long it takes to find a Blitz-19x19-game using the AF with no preferences.

  • For 12k I could not find a game in two minutes
  • For 10k I could not find a game in two minutes
  • For 8k there was already someone waiting (maybe someone else did his own experiment)